17 money facts for 2017
One twelfth of 2017 is over already! I don’t know where the time has gone. I really believe that 2017 is going to be the year I get on top of my finances once and for all. I set up ibeatdebt.com to help you manage your money too. With that in mind, I have pulled together the 17 things you need to know about money in 2017.
- In April, the National Minimum Wage will go up to £7.50 per hour (if you are 25 or over). If you are under that age, check out the ACAS website for your rate of pay.
- The tax free allowance will also go up in April, from £11,000 to £11,500. This gives you an extra £500 before you need to start paying tax. Check the gov.uk website for more information.
- If you are auto-enrolled into a workplace pension scheme, currently the amount your employer has to put in is 1%, but this will go up again next year. Again the gov.uk website has some really great information about this.
- Experian and Clear Score now offer you access to your credit report for free – for life! Keeping an eye on it and making sure any errors are corrected can help you long term financially.
- The budget in Spring 2017 (Wednesday 8th March) is going to be the last one held in the Spring. Going forward we will just have one in the Autumn.
- Should you have to declare yourself bankrupt, from this year the process is a lot easier, and cheaper. The BBC website has more information. Before you do anything this drastic I would recommend getting debt advice. Read my post about how it has changed my life.
- There are such things as completely fee free bank accounts. These can be helpful for people with a poor credit history, but also to ensure you don’t accidentally incur charges.
- You can make money just by switching your bank account! Easy free money – yes please!
- Applying for a credit card (or other financial products) leaves a footprint on your credit report. This in turn can impact your prospects of getting future financial products. Money Saving Expert have put together a great tool that will tell you if you are likely to be eligible for various products before applying for them. It does this with a soft search which won’t impact your credit.
- New rules on stamp duty (the land tax you pay on a purchase of property) is increasing this year – but only for buy to let and second homes. The changes in the past few years made it a lot more affordable for first time buyers and movers who don’t have a second home though.
- After the wonderful new £5 notes last year, this year we are getting new £1 coins in March and new polymer £10 notes from the Summer.
- Everyone can access free and impartial money advice through the Money Advice Service.
- As utility companies start to charge more, you can quickly and easily switch by checking sites such as uswitch – I did last year and will save over £100 just on my gas and electricity this year.
- I will always shop around before paying full price. I love voucher and coupon sites such as Voucher Code and will always have a hunt online for a promotional code before purchasing. There always seems to be one for my favourite pizza chains for example.
- Another way to save money on your purchases is by using cashback sites. Check out my blog post about how I use them.
- There are 191 currencies in use in the world – so make sure you check before you travel! The US $ is by far the most widely accepted though so this is usually a safe bet.
- Money is really important – we need it to keep a roof over our heads, and food in our stomachs. Don’t forget though that money isn’t everything! It really can’t buy you happiness so don’t let it take over your life!